I am grateful that architecture has given me an adaptable skill set and a very serious work ethic.
Why did you choose Cornell and AAP?
AAP offered the best architectural education in the U.S., coupled with all that Cornell has to offer as a vast research university. The resources and facilities, as well as the standards of education and craft, drew me to AAP. I was really attracted to the concentrated nature of the B.Arch. program, but the ability to step out of that bubble and into other fields of study is equally valuable to me.
What experiences have contributed to your sense of belonging at AAP?
The traditions associated with our college have bound together class after class. I find it so important for such a small community to be tightly knit. Dragon Day and the like are beautiful events that build our community!!
What are your extracurricular interests and how have you incorporated them into your college life?
I've been able to apply the graphic skills I've learned as a tool for designing to a variety of graphic design and branding projects. One of those, Anabel's Grocery, has developed into my most important commitment at Cornell outside of classes. My sophomore year, I joined a team of students who had identified food insecurity as a pressing issue at Cornell and other college campuses. Cornell Dining is fantastic but expensive, and supermarkets in Ithaca require a car or a long bus ride. Access to fresh produce and ingredients is very limited on campus. Over the past three years, we've worked to establish a student-run grocery store on campus that provides affordable, nutritious, and accessible groceries coupled with educational programming about cooking for yourself in college. Anabel's Grocery opened in May 2017.
Starting Anabel's Grocery has been an incredible learning experience for me and our team of nearly 40 students from a wide variety of disciplines at Cornell. I've played an integral role in the renovation of the store space in Anabel Taylor Hall, the design and construction of store cabinetry, the development of a branding strategy and operation system of a grocery store, and the mission-centric planning for a social entrepreneurial project. This project falls at the intersection of my love for food, design, and interdisciplinary collaboration.
I've also made a concerted effort to take classes outside of architecture that interest me. Some of the most rewarding classes I have taken include Prisons, Politics and Policy; A Global History of Love; and Food, Gender, and Culture.
What do you hope to accomplish during your time at AAP and after graduation?
I am interested in working abroad for a few years in design before attending graduate school. I would love to become a licensed architect, but I am also open to related paths. I am grateful that architecture has given me an adaptable skill set and a very serious work ethic.